Glenn Phillips made a scintillating century and Trent Boult ripped through Sri Lanka as New Zealand took a big stride towards the T20 World Cup semi-finals with a 65-run win.

The Black Caps were in big trouble on 15-3 after losing Finn Allen, Devon Conway and Kane Williamson in the first four overs, but Phillips (104 off 64 balls) came to the rescue with his second T20I hundred.

Phillips took advantage of being dropped on 12 and 45, putting on a show at the SCG on Saturday to get the Group 1 leaders up to 167-7, the fit-again Daryl Mitchell (22) providing support in a fourth-wicket stand of 84. 

Sri Lanka were sloppy in the field and never looked like being successful with a run chase that ended when they were bowled out for only 102 in the final over.

Left-arm seamer Boult claimed his best T20I figures of 4-13 after the excellent Tim Southee (1-12) trapped Pathum Nissanka leg before in the first over.

Sri Lanka were reduced to 8-4 and did not look like reaching three figures at 65-8 before Bhanuka Rajapaksa (34) and captain Dasun Shanaka (35) showed some resistance.

Spinners Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi both claimed figures of 2-21 as New Zealand moved two points clear at the top of the group with two games to play, with Sri Lanka down in fifth place.

Phillips punishes sloppy Sri Lanka

Phillips struck four sixes and found the rope 10 times in a magnificent innings, but it could have been a very different story.

Nissanka spilled a simple chance to reduce the Black Caps to 29-4 when he put Phillips down early in his knock at long-off.

A diving Shanaka spurned a more tricky opportunity to remove Phillips before he reached his half-century and he made Sri Lanka pay, bringing up his stunning hundred off only 61 balls.

Lightning Boult strikes again

Boult has proven time and again he is one of the best bowlers in the world and he gave another demonstration in Sydney.

He had Kusal Mendis caught behind, then bowled Dhananjaya de Silva and got rid of Charith Asalanka in a devastating opening burst before returning to get Shanaka caught at deep square leg by Mitchell.

There were 18 dot balls from Boult and he conceded just the one boundary.

England and Australia's hopes of reaching the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup continue to hang in the balance after their clash was washed out without a ball being bowled on Friday.

England's meeting with their rivals had been billed as a crucial game for both teams after Jos Buttler's side suffered a shock defeat to Ireland, while the hosts joined them on two points in Group 1 after losing to New Zealand and beating Sri Lanka.

Heavy rain in Melbourne resulted in a delay over of almost two hours before the abandonment was confirmed, with officials having completed two inspections of the MCG's sodden turf.

After seeing the points shared, England will now likely have to win their final two group fixtures – against New Zealand and Sri Lanka – to have any hope of reaching the last four.

Speaking to Sky Sports before it was confirmed there would be no play, Ben Stokes insisted England would relish the pressure of facing two do-or-die matches.

"It's almost going to be like playing a final every game. That's what these competitions are all about," Stokes said. "You're always under pressure to perform in these.

"You can't expect everyone to deliver all of the time, but it's just about your bouncebackability and we've generally been quite good at that."

Buttler, meanwhile, had been due to make his 100th T20I appearance on Friday, and was bitterly disappointed to see the match called off.

"It was due to be a massive occasion, we're very disappointed," Buttler told Sky Sports.

"It would have been a great place to do it, but we have full focus on our next match and keeping our tournament alive. We've been playing some good cricket leading into the tournament.

"It was a really disappointing performance the other night, but we've retained full faith in the group and have confidence in the players for the rest of the tournament."

England face New Zealand at the Gabba in Brisbane on Tuesday, one day after Australia take on Ireland at the same venue.

Pakistan batsman Shan Masood admits his side "let it slip" in their shock T20 World Cup loss to Zimbabwe on Thursday.

Having restricted their rivals in Group 2 to 130-8, Babar Azam's side looked poised for a successful chase at Optus Stadium in Perth.

But a momentum-shifting spell with the ball from Sikandar Raza helped turn the match on its head and guide Zimbabwe to a famous upset, leaving Masood to acknowledge Pakistan fell short of their own expectations.

"We are very disappointed," he told BBC Radio 5 Sports Extra. "I don't think we're a batting unit that can't achieve a target of 130.

"We just had to finish the game off. It's very disappointing that, when push came to shove and [the] pressure came on, we let it slip.

"We have to give credit to Zimbabwe, they came out of the blocks quickly. Once you've got that start, however bad you play, you still get to a score that you can fight for."

Raza, the Pakistan-born Zimbabwe all-rounder, produced three wickets and the crucial run-out for the victors, and he admitted he was struggling to put his team's result into context.

"I'm lost for words," he added. "My thoughts are dry and I think that is because of all my emotions. I just can't tell you how proud I am of this group of boys.

"The way the seamers started at the top was unbelievable and the way we backed it up in the field and just kept believing, I don't think there are any words that I can share right now."

Matthew Mott says England will not "throw the baby out with the bath water" for a monumental T20 World Cup showdown with Australia following their stunning defeat to Ireland.

England's hopes of qualifying for the semi-finals suffered a shock blow when they were consigned to a five-run Duckworth-Lewis-Stern loss at the hands of the Irish, with rain cutting short Wednesday's contest at the MCG.

Jos Buttler's side are third in Group 1 and must respond when they face a fifth-placed Australia side who are level on points with them.

Mott, England's Australian white-ball head coach, ruled out ringing the changes for a huge clash in Melbourne on Friday.

He said: "We have played really solid cricket for the last month…we are not going throw the baby out with the bath water. It's just business as usual. We'll go through the sessions, see who's pulled up well and make changes.

"But it is very unlikely to change the structure of the team. It might be a change here or two depending on how the bowlers pulled up."

Ben Stokes has failed to reach double figures in both World Cup knocks so far, but Mott expects the Test skipper to come good with the bat.

"He's an incredible player for our team," Mott said of the all-rounder. "He's a real leader in our group as well, apart from the official leaders.

"I thought his bowling has been a real bonus for us. I think a lot of people probably underestimate his bowling coming into this tournament.

"And he's been key for us. I think he's bowled some big overs particularly in the powerplay. With the bat, he hasn't come off yet. But his career would suggest that at some point someone's going to pay a price and hopefully that's Australia in a day's time."

Virat Kohli made another half-century as India took another step towards the T20 World Cup semi-finals with a 56-run victory over Netherlands at the SCG.

Kohli's magnificent unbeaten 82 gave India a dramatic win over Pakistan on Sunday and he followed that up with 62 from 44 balls as India posted 179-2 in Sydney on Thursday.

Captain Rohit Sharma struck 53 from 39 deliveries after being dropped by Tim Pringle on 13 and Suryakumar Yadav (51 not out off 25) also made a half-century to leave the Dutch facing a substantial run chase.

Netherlands never looked like pulling off a huge upset, falling short on 123-9 as they suffered defeat in as many Super 12 matches.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2-9) took the wicket of Vikramjit Singh and did not conceded a run in his first two overs, while Axar Patel (2-18), Ravichandran Ashwin (2-21) and Arshdeep Singh (2-37) also impressed with the ball.

Victory for India moved them a point ahead of South Africa, who hammered Bangladesh by 104 runs earlier in the day, at the top of Group 2.

 

Kohli goes back-to-back, Suryakumar shows his class

A Kohli masterclass gave India a sensational victory over Pakistan at the MCG and the former captain carried on where he left off in another classy knock.

He reached his half-century in 37 balls, hitting two sixes and finding the rope three times in another high-quality innings.

Suryakumar, number three in the T20I batting rankings, hit seven fours and reached his half-century by launching the final ball of the innings from Logan van Beek for six.

The brilliance of Bhuvneshwar 

India also demonstrated the potency of their bowling attack and it was Bhuvneshwar who set the tone.

He bowled back-to-back maidens and cleaned up before returning to get rid of captain Scott Edwards in his second spell.

Matthew Wade has tested positive for coronavirus but is expected to play in Australia's huge T20 World Cup showdown with England on Friday.

The wicketkeeper-batter returned a positive test on Wednesday evening, but only has minor symptoms.

Wade is set to feature at the MCG, provided his symptoms remain only minor, while spinner Adam Zampa is poised to play his first match of the tournament after he was sidelined by COVID-19.

Australia do not have a recognised back-up keeper in their squad after Josh Inglis suffered a hand injury prior to the tournament and was replaced by all-rounder Cameron Green.

Glenn Maxwell took the gloves in training on Thursday, but it would seem he will not be required to step in behind the stumps in a crucial Group 1 showdown.

The hosts are fifth in Group 1, two places behind England after they suffered a stunning five-run loss to Ireland by the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method in a rainy Melbourne on Wednesday.

Rilee Rossouw scored another century and Anrich Nortje shone with the ball as South Africa crushed Bangladesh by 104 runs at the T20 World Cup.

Rain frustratingly denied the Proteas an opening Group 2 win over Zimbabwe, but this time Rossouw made 109 from 56 balls and put on a stand of 163 with Quinton de Kock to help South Africa to 205-5 at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

It was a second T20I hundred in October for Rossouw, who made the first of his career against India on October 4, and set the tone for the match as Bangladesh wilted to 101 all out in their reply, thanks in a large part to the efforts of Nortje (4-10).

Each of his first three wickets came inside the opening five overs as Bangladesh's top order floundered, Litton Das' 34 off 31 their only score of note.

With their handsome victory, South Africa belatedly trouble the win column and have three points from two games, with Bangladesh having one win and one defeat to their name from their opening matches.

WILY RILEE SETS THE MARK

There were a couple of scary moments for Rossouw, who swung and missed off Hasan Mahmud in the 13th over and was put down by the same man in the following set of six.

But by and large it was a masterclass, with Rossouw smashing eight sixes and seven fours and taking the match away, alongside De Kock.

De Kock smashed 47 inside three overs against Zimbabwe when chasing a revised target of 64, only for the weather to deny him, but the wicketkeeper-batsman had 63 off 38 here (three sixes, seven fours).

NORTJE STIFLES BANGLADESH

The only slight concern for South Africa was possibly the runs they left on the field. They had 91 after 10 overs, and 171 after 15, but the final five yielded just 34 for the loss of three wickets.

They need not have worried, though, as Nortje's electric efforts had Najmul Hossain Shanto (9), Soumya Sarkar (15) and Shakib Al Hasan (1) traipsing back to leave Bangladesh 39-3 after 4.4 overs.

Tabraiz Shamsi finished with 3-20, including taking the wicket of Das, and Nortje returned to complete the job by bowling Taskin Ahmed (10).

Aaron Finch was left with mixed emotions after Australia beat Sri Lanka in the Cricket World Cup but he "couldn't hit the ball" in a "poor" innings.

Australia started the defence of their title by suffering an 89-run defeat to New Zealand in a repeat of last year's final, but the hosts responded with a seven-wicket victory at Perth Stadium on Tuesday.

Marcus Stoinis was the star of the show, blasting a record-breaking unbeaten 59 from only 18 balls to get the holders home with 21 balls to spare and move them into fourth place in Group 1.

The powerful all-rounder cleared the rope six times and struck another four boundaries to register Australia's fastest T20I half-century and the joint-second quickest in a T20 World Cup, passing 50 from only 17 deliveries.

Finch finished on 31 not out from 42 balls after watching Stoinis cut loose at the other end, and the captain gave a frank assessment of his scratchy knock.

He said in the post-match presentation: "I'm very happy [with the win]. Obviously my innings was unusual. It was poor. I just couldn't hit the ball. But I thought the way that we approached it with the bat was fine.

"It would've been nice if I could've kicked on earlier and made the chase a bit easier but all in all, pretty clinical, I think with the ball as well.

"They bowled a hard length. It was tough. It's such a big ground that you feel as though it's hard to just stand and deliver. Especially with a bit of extra bounce and when the ball is seaming slightly, you feel it's just not quite as easy to hit the middle of the bat. That's no excuse for the way I played, but it's nice to get two points."

The opener praised Stoinis following his sensational exhibition of clean striking.

"It was a pretty special innings," skipper Finch said. "To come out with that intent is the main thing. When you walk out to bat and you have that presence at the crease, that's half the battle in T20 cricket. When you have the skill and the strength that he's got, that's a pretty good combo."

Australia's next assignment will a mouthwatering clash with England at the MCG on Friday.

Marcus Stoinis hit a half-century in record time to propel Australia to a seven-wicket victory over Sri Lanka on Tuesday and get his side back on track in the T20 World Cup.

The tournament hosts were heavily beaten by New Zealand in their opener and were then set a competitive target by Sri Lanka, who reached 157-6 from their 20 overs.

Pathum Nissanka (40) top-scored for Sri Lanka, albeit using 45 balls, and Charith Asalanka (38) also contributed in an up-and-down innings that saw the Lions hit just two sixes.

Australia still had work to do with the pressure on, and they struggled early on, with David Warner (11) and Mitchell Marsh (17) falling to leave their side 60-2 in the ninth over.

However, Stoinis turned on the style by reaching his half-century in just 17 deliveries – the fastest fifty by an Australian in T20I history – en route to an unbeaten 59 from 18 balls.

Australia reached their target with 21 balls to spare in Perth for what turned out to be a run-rate-boosting win, despite Aaron Finch (31 from 42) failing to impress.

Australia back on track

This victory was Australia's third in a row against Sri Lanka at the T20 World Cup and sets up an intriguing contest against England at the MCG on Friday.

Sri Lanka had won eight of their past nine T20Is, including their Group 1 opener against Ireland, and must now dust themselves down ahead of facing New Zealand.

Stoinis stars as Finch falters

Finch scored no fours and only one six, though it did not matter thanks to the brilliant batting of Stoinis, who by comparison hit four fours and six sixes.

Stoinis overtook team-mate Warner's 18 off 50 against West Indies in 2010 as the fastest Australian to reach his half-century in the format, while only Yuvraj Singh (12 balls against England in 2007) has done so faster in the T20 World Cup.

South Africa were denied a winning start to their T20 World Cup campaign by rain in Hobart, with Quinton de Kock's Herculean effort against Zimbabwe ultimately going to waste.

Monday's contest was initially shortened to nine overs following a pre-match rain delay of over three hours, with another two overs being lost following a stoppage early in South Africa's innings.

Both sides open their Super 12 accounts with a point following a declaration of no result, which came with the Proteas requiring just 14 runs for victory following a fine innings from De Kock.

Inclement weather saw the teams exit the field after the national anthems, but South Africa looked set to begin their campaign with a win after starting well when play finally began.

Zimbabwe openers Craig Ervine (2) and Regis Chakabva (8) were gone within three overs, the former handing Wayne Parnell a routine catch before the latter feathered an edge through to De Kock.

When the former skipper made a spectacular one-handed catch to see off Sikandar Raza for a duck, Zimbabwe were faltering on 19-4, but eventually reached 79-5 thanks to Wessly Madhevere (35 not out) and Milton Shumba (18).

De Kock looked set to be the hero with the bat after the Proteas were set a revised target of 64. 

Fellow opener Temba Bavuma (2 not out) was a mere spectator as De Kock reached 47 by the end of the third over, but the weather came to Zimbabwe's aid as the rain began to lash down once more, leaving the officials with little choice but to stop play altogether.

Taskin Ahmed took four wickets as Bangladesh beat Netherlands by nine runs in their first game of the T20 World Cup at Bellerive Oval.

Afif Hossain top scored with 38 as the Tigers were restricted to 144-8 in their opening Group 2 game in Hobart on Monday.

Paul van Meekeren (2-21) and Bas de Leede (2-29) claimed two wickets apiece to keep Bangladesh down to a total that the Dutch would have felt they could chase down.

Paceman ensured it was advantage Bangladesh by taking two wickets with the first two deliveries of the run chase, dismissing Vikramjit Singh and De Leede.

Netherlands were deep in the mire at 15-4 after Max O'Dowd and Tom Cooper were run out, but a half-century from Colin Ackermann gave them hope.

Ackermann struck 62 off 48 balls, but he lacked support and the Dutch were all out for 135.

Taskin too hot to handle

It was an impressive spell with the ball from Taskin, who took four wickets in a T20I for the first time in his career.

His figures of 4-25 earned him the player of the match award, removing Ackermann and Shariz Ahmad after his brilliant first over. 

Ackermann shows resistance 

It proved to be in vain, but Ackermann impressed with the bat after coming in at number four.

He scored two of Netherlands' four sixes, while also hitting six fours as to prevent his side from being embarrassed. 

Virat Kohli produced what captain Rohit Sharma hailed as one of the greatest innings by an India batsman in the dramatic victory over Pakistan at the T20 World Cup.

Pakistan looked to be well in control after tallying 159-8 in front of over 90,000 spectators at the MCG and then reducing India to 31-4 in reply.

However, Kohli struck 82 not out, sharing in a fifth-wicket stand of 113 with Hardik Pandya along the way.

When Pakistan's Mohammad Nawaz wobbled under the pressure of delivering the final over of the match, India took advantage and snatched a four-wicket win over their great rivals with a single from the final ball.

India needed 28 from eight balls at one stage, but consecutive sixes from Kohli off Haris Rauf at the end of the 19th over changed that to 16 from six.

Amid high drama as India lost both Pandya (40) and Dinesh Karthik (1) in the closing over, Kohli helped the team he used to skipper over the line.

Rohit said of Kohli's effort: "It is definitely his best for sure. From the situation we were in, and to come out with victory, I think it has to be one of India's best knocks, not just his best knock.

"Because still in the 13th over we were so behind the game and the required rate was climbing up and up. To come out and chase that score was an extremely brilliant effort from Virat, and Hardik played a role there."

Kohli ceded the white-ball captaincy to Rohit soon after last year's T20 World Cup, and Sunday's hero in Melbourne had been struggling for runs until recently finding a little spark.

Rohit said: "We know the qualities that he has, and he's done so well in these type of conditions in all three forms, so obviously he used his experience today more than anything else – staying calm under pressure.

"We know how good he is when the score is in front of him. He's one of the best chasers in the world, so I thought that 100-run partnership was a game-changing moment."

Kohli initially struggled to contextualise what he achieved.

He said at the post-match presentation: "It's a surreal atmosphere, I have no words, no idea how that happened. I am really lost for words.

"The calculation was simple. Nawaz had one over to bowl, so if I could take Haris down, they would panic. From 28 in eight, it came down to 16 in six. I tried to stick to my instincts."

On reflection, Kohli agreed it rated as one of his finest innings. He ranked it even above another famous 82 not out – one that he scored against Australia in Mohali, in the 2016 edition of this competition.

"Standing here, I just feel like it was meant to be," he said. "Till today, Mohali was my best innings, against Australia. Today, I will count this one higher."

Kusal Mendis carried his bat and Sri Lanka's bowlers all impressed in an emphatic nine-wicket victory over Ireland in the T20 World Cup on Sunday.

Opening batsman Mendis made an unbeaten 68 at the Bellerive Oval in Hobart as Sri Lanka easily chased down a target of 129 despite the absence of the injured Pathum Nissanka.

Dhananjaya de Silva (31 off 25) and Charith Asalanka (31* off 22) also did their bit to open Sri Lanka's Group 1 campaign with a resounding win.

It had been Sri Lanka's bowlers who laid the foundations for Mendis. Maheesh Theekshana (2-19) and Wanindu Hasaranga (2-25) claimed a pair apiece, while each of their bowling unit took a wicket to limit Ireland to 128-8.

Paul Stirling opened with 34 off 25 and Harry Tector (45) ensured Ireland at least had something to defend, but the contest was decidedly one-sided.

COOL KUSAL LEADS THE WAY

Sri Lanka's route to this stage started with an embarrassing loss to Namibia but wins over the United Arab Emirates and Netherlands booked a spot in the Super 12.

Kusal ensured there would be no hiccup to begin this stage, whacking three sixes and five fours in his 43-ball knock, which he finished with a maximum off Simi Singh over deep-square leg, as Sri Lanka wrapped up the win with 30 balls remaining and nine wickets in hand.

BOWLING UNIT IN SYNC

One of the most pleasing aspects for Sri Lanka was the shared responsibility with the ball. Lahiru Kumara had already snared Ireland captain Andrew Balbirnie in the second over by the time Theekshana encouraged Lorcan Tucker to glove onto the stumps.

Theekshana also took the bails off George Dockrell's wicket and Binura Fernando took out dangerman Tector prior to Hasaranga taking a couple of late wickets.

Sam Curran became England's first bowler to take five wickets in a T20I and wants to keep his sizzling form going deep into the World Cup.

The left-arm seamer snaffled stunning figures of 5-10 from 3.4 overs, claiming four wickets from his final six balls as Afghanistan were bowled out for 112 before England started with a five-wicket win at Perth Stadium on Saturday.

Curran also caught the eye in a recent 2-0 win over hosts Australia and the all-rounder is revelling having the opportunity to play a key role.

"To come here and start with a win was obviously great, and Ireland on Wednesday will be another tricky game so we'll prepare well for that, fly to Melbourne tomorrow, and go again," Curran said at the post-match presentation.

"I'm just trying to be as adaptable as possible. Early in my career I was probably more suited to the powerplay, but I've tried to get better at different phases of the game. I'm really enjoying my cricket at the moment."

Assessing his five-wicket haul, Curran said: "You've got to enjoy the days when it goes well, and hopefully it goes well for the next five or six games."

Curran was sporting a trimmer haircut than usual, and he told Sky Sports: "The barber yesterday went a little bit short, so hopefully in a couple of games it'll grow out a bit, but I'll take some stick from my mates."

England might have hoped to finish this match in a little more style, with the top three batters each getting to double figures but failing to go on. 

Liam Livingstone's unbeaten 29 provided the impetus at the end of the innings to get the job done, moving England level on points with New Zealand after they hammered Australia.

"You saw the way the Afghanistan team made it quite tricky towards the end," Curran said. "We knew they had world-class spinners in the middle there and it was just nice to get the first victory over the line."

England took all of Afghanistan's wickets with catches, the first time 10 have gone down in a T20 World Cup game in such a manner.

"We really worked on our fielding over the last couple of weeks," said Curran. "We know it's going to be a huge factor in the tournament."

Cricket West Indies (CWI) will conduct a "thorough postmortem" after the Windies' embarrassing early T20 World Cup exit.

West Indies are the only team to have won the T20 World Cup twice, but they failed to qualify for the Super 12 stage in Australia.

Nicolas Pooran's side crashed out with a whimper at Bellerive Oval, where Ireland hammered them by nine wickets to advance along with Zimbabwe, Sri Lanka and Netherlands on Friday.

The Windies suffered a stunning defeat to Scotland in their first game of the tournament in Hobart on Monday and despite beating Zimbabwe in midweek, will be on the plane home.

West Indies finished bottom of Group B and it appears there may be consequences for such an abject failure.

CWI president Ricky Skerritt said in a statement: "I am deeply disappointed with the performance and results of our team in Australia, and I appreciate the sense of utter frustration that is being experienced by many.

"The ongoing inability of our batsmen to prevail over opposing slow bowling continued to be an obvious weakness in Australia, and untimely shot selections seem to be deeply embedded in the T20 batting culture of our senior team.

"However, I want to assure stakeholders that a thorough postmortem will be carried out on all aspects of our World Cup preparation and performance and that solutions will be found in keeping with CWI's strategy to improve the quality and sustainability of cricket on all fronts, and in all formats.

"West Indies cricket is bigger than any one individual or event, and continues to need the input and support of all stakeholders."

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